U.S. hospitals are preparing for flu season and a rush of panic by people with flu thinking they have Ebola, as the two have similar symptoms. At least one panic case has already been reported, as a woman who had traveled to South Africa presented at a hospital with what she thought were potential Ebola symptoms, but was found to be pregnant. Dr. Bruce Hirsch, an infectious diseases specialist at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, NY:
It tells you how ready for panic we can get ourselves. There’s a lot of anxiety and the answer to anxiety is information and training.
Dr. Sampson Davis, an emergency medicine physician at Meadowlands Hospital Center in Secaucus, NJ:
I think there will be an increase of people who want to get checked out just because of the fear factor, especially if we start to see more of a spread of Ebola